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Old 04-30-2014, 07:15 PM   #1
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Default Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

First of all, as we say in Aggieland, howdy.

I've been reading the thread on the A&M game as well as threads on our fan sites about you guys. I realize that for two opponents who will be meeting for the first, and as of now for the first of many times, there are a lot of unknowns for both fanbases regarding the opposing team. Add in the kicker that this is a season opener and both teams are replacing key playmakers, and the unknown factor goes up a ton. I wanted to consolidate a preview of our team, from a lifelong fan and Former Student's (we call our alumni that) perspective position by position on both sides of the ball.

Offense
Quarterback
A starter between Kyle Allen and Kenny Hill will be named mid-August. Kenny hurt his chances with his arrest and missing practice time, and I will say Kyle Allen drew rave reviews during spring ball. When you are the number one pocket passer in the country coming out of high school, you should. Both guys are primarily pocket passers, with Kenny being the more athletic runner. Both have the footwork to get five yards on a play where everyone is covered. A&M's offense will look much more like the traditional "air raid", since these guys are FAR more pocket oriented than Johnny.

Running Backs
Tra Carson, a transfer from Oregon, really came on at the end of last year and will start. He's a bruiser who flashed some surprising speed on a couple of long runs last year. However, starting will mean nothing because this is a backfield which also has Trey Williams. He's shifty and quick. Watch his youtube highlights and you'll get the idea. Brandon Williams, an Oklahoma transfer, brings straight line speed. He hasn't gotten a large share of carries but with Ben Malena gone that number will go up. James White, RS Fr., was a surprise during spring ball and is more like Carson.

Wide Receivers
Malcome Kennedy returns as Mr. Reliable. Good route runner and team leader. Josh Reynolds, a newcomer, surprised during spring ball and will compete for a starting spot. Ricky Seals Jones is the name to watch. He got hurt very early in the season last year but was the number one recruit in Texas. He's big and fast. Speedy Noil enrolled early and wowed during spring ball. He and LaQuivonte Gonzalez (the two Speedys if you will) will add a new dimension to the offense this year. True deep threats who can strike from anywhere, and not just big reliable pass catchers. Jake Spavital, the new offensive coordinator who took over the role in the Chick Fil A bowl, will use Cameron Clear, a Tennessee transfer, quite a bit at tight end. He is a sasquatch.

Offensive Line
Thanks to Mike Sherman and Kevin Sumlin's recruiting, this has been just a big a part of us transitioning well into the SEC as Johnny. Cedric Ogbuehi, Jarvis Harrison, Mike Matthews, and Germain Ifedi (spring star), all return up front with a competition between some new comers going on at the other guard spot. Much like Manziel had in 2012, the new qb will benefit from a good offensive line and dangerous running game.

Defense (Ah, and here is where it gets interesting)
Up front, I'm going to tell you that the only person I am assuming doesn't play against South Carolina is DE Gavin Stansbury (his assault case has taken some twists and turns even though he has been reinstated). As for the others, the offenses, I would think, were early enough in the offseason that they don't miss USC. I hope I am right because they are all guys we will need.

Defensive Line
Isaiah Golden returns along with Alonzo Williams and Hardreck Walker. The returning starters will get a boost from freshmen Zaycoven Henderson and DeShawn Washington. Henderson, who we flipped from Texas, was a bright spot during spring. Justin Manning, who redshirted last year, was the top rated defensive player from Texas out of high school, but for some reason the staff felt he needed to develop some last year. All reports are that he is coming along nicely. At end, Julien Obioha returns as a third year starter. Jay Arnold got much better towards the end of the year and Daeshon Hall, who is small but fast, will be relied upon to help alleviate the problem of not getting enough pressure (any pressure) on quarterbacks last year. The biggest name to remember is Myles Garrett. The UA All American, number one defensive recruit in Texas, and top 10 ESPN recruit is projected to make an impact immediately. His highlight film indicates he should do just that. If there was ever a recruit A&M sorely needed to sign, this is the guy.

Linebacker
Darian Claiborne will probably be strong side. He was a freshman last year who showed some real flashes of brilliance but needs to get his head straight off of it. He can be a star if he does. Shaan Washington, sophomore, who is undersized, along with Tommy Sanders, are faster and will play weak side. Jordan Mastrogiovanni also returns for HIS sophomore season (see a pattern?) and has solidified himself as the middle linebacker. He MUST improve against the run and that has been his focus. Also expect to see Reggie Chevis, a redshirt last year who is much more of a thumper, and TCU transfer AJ Hilliard to rotate in pretty often. I'd also expect Otara Alaka, another Texas flip, to come in and compete.

Secondary
By far the most experienced unit and strength of the defense. New coach Terry Joseph from Nebraska has gotten a lot out of his guys this spring and Aggie fans are very high on him. Deshazor Everett returns for his senior campaign (he is the guy who sealed the win against Bama two years ago), with Devante Harris (junior) on the other side. There's a number of guys who stepped up in spring ball to back them up. Howard Matthews will be back at safety, and the heat has been on him. Anytime A&M got beat deep the last two years (specifically looking at Ole Miss 2013, late against Bama in 2012, and Duke) it was on this guy. Good news is, the new coach has gotten a hold of him and he has had a great spring. However, I would expect Spurrier to take a shot at him fairly early in the ball game with Roland or Byrd just to test the waters. Watching film of you guys, the PA long ball seemed to be your go to big play. If Matthews improvement is what it supposedly has been, it will be sorely needed for A&M against the Cocks. Floyd Raven returns as a senior at the other safety spot and Noel Ellis, high school teammate of Speedy Noil, will be at the nickel. Nick Harvey, a true freshman, may fight for that nickel spot when he gets on campus. He has been compared to the Honey Badger.

Special Teams
Thank God we found Josh Lambo to replace Taylor Bertolet at kicker. Drew Kaser is a solid punter but I'm hoping it won't come to that.

To sum it up, A&M has a great running game, and whoever the qb is will have that and a variety of wideouts to throw it to. Not just big physical guys like Evans, but some speedsters as well, lead by Noil. On defense, counting the number of freshmen we had in the front 7 last year will tell you all you need to know about why we struggled. Mark Snyder is a good defensive coordinator and really did well with the 2012 group and improved us from what we had been. He can scheme interceptions and pick sixes, and I think the guys having a year under their belt and more very elite youth coming in will help him continue to build a true SEC depth chart on that side of the ball. A&M certainly won't be the "Wrecking Crew" of the 80s and 90s, not yet. But they will improve this year. The question is, in the first game out of the gate in a hostile environment, will they be improved enough? We will have to see.

Last edited by KSigAg12; 05-01-2014 at 03:22 AM.
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Old 04-30-2014, 07:45 PM   #2
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Welcome to the board! Nice first post..
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Old 04-30-2014, 08:57 PM   #3
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Welcome and yes it will be a challenging game
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Old 04-30-2014, 09:25 PM   #4
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

DT and MD gon' eat.
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Old 04-30-2014, 09:27 PM   #5
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

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Originally Posted by KSigAg12 View Post
First of all, as we say in Aggieland, howdy.
Howdy right back, and welcome aboard. Let me know where the Aggies hang out and I'll return the favor closer to kick-off.
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Old 04-30-2014, 10:22 PM   #6
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Well, when you come to College Station in 2015, the place to be is Northgate on Friday night. It isn't really walking distance from the hotels, so either take a taxi from there or rent a house somewhere behind the Gate. The Dixie Chicken is a place you can go hear country music you haven't heard in years, eat cheese fries and drink beer. There are a number of bars and no matter what your style, you can find one that can facilitate. Irish pub, hip hop club, shot bar, or especially two stepping and checking out girls in boots. The new place for both food and drink is Chimy's, and that was Johnny's favorite place. Midnight Yell Practice is a must. You won't have any idea what's happening, but that only enhances the experience.

Tailgating is going to probably change a little bit once the Kyle Field renovation is complete. Spence Park I expect to still be around and the place to be. Our tailgate is over on the other side of the stadium and I would expect us to be able to retain that spot as well, but if anything changes I will let you know. Going to the quad to see the band and corps of cadets step off really enhances the gameday experience, or just waiting for them on the way to the stadium. The fraternity tailgates are over near the quad as of now and are a fun place to go as well, especially for cowboy boot and skirt watching (this is a look you guys will have to become accustomed to).

I desperately want to go to Columbia this year, but I'm starting a new job in May so the vacation hour situation remains to be seen. But I will certainly go eventually.
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Old 04-30-2014, 10:38 PM   #7
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Welcome to Cockytalk and AEKDB.

Solid first post. Should be a great opener.
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Old 04-30-2014, 11:06 PM   #8
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

AEKDB
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Old 04-30-2014, 11:13 PM   #9
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Nice scouting report, thanks for the info. It's going to be a great first game of the season and a great start to our series.

Hopefully you guys have a miserable time.
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Old 04-30-2014, 11:22 PM   #10
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

If I posted something like this on texags then I would be ridiculed. Buncha assholes over there..
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Old 04-30-2014, 11:24 PM   #11
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

I'll be brief in a USC scouting report. Our offense is loaded. Offensive line will be our best unit. "New" starting QB but 5th year senior who has started and has played very well. Great RBs. Lot of talent and experience at WR and TE.

Defense: Little Shaky, lot of talent and youth across the board.

Don't have any idea what we are going to have at CB yet. Rico McWilliams is supposed to be the next man up and he looked pretty good in the Spring Game, but we had a lost Freshman class this year because it was a big hole to fill.

Safties are our most experienced unit, but there were not our top play makers or leaders though. We are going to to have to find out who the leaders are and who is going to step up their game.

Sophomore LB Skai Moore was very good in his Freshman year. Great improvment from Juniors. TJ Holloman and Kawain Lewis was also obvious from last year to the spring game.

DT JT Surratt and DE Gerald Dixon are our experience and looked to at the leaders of DL. Some Guys to keep on on DT are Kelsey Griffin and JUCO Abu Lamin. At DE RS Freshman David Johnson and Junior Darius English to to e the ones battling there.
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Old 04-30-2014, 11:42 PM   #12
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Read,
Thanks and that sounds very similar to what I have read and heard. Honestly, I think the matchup is very intriguing because there are similar strengths and some similar questions.

455,
TexAgs folks like to mess around but for the most part we mean well. The guys over in the football board (what we call 'the zoo') like to yuck it up a bit. But aggies take pride in our hospitality and I know we've had Alabama and Florida fans write to us about it. I assure you your visit to aggieland will be top notch.
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Old 05-01-2014, 08:04 AM   #13
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Thank you.

South Carolinians are the original howdy sayers. Back in old England, the other colonies advertising bulletins talked about family and starting a new life. Charles Towne, on the other hand, was marketed to the English pioneers as the greatest society town of all the colonies. Thus, Charles Towne attracted superior party animals. It is in our genes. We continue to lead the world in social culture.
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Old 05-01-2014, 08:11 AM   #14
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

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Thank you.

South Carolinians are the original howdy sayers. Back in old England, the other colonies advertising bulletins talked about family and starting a new life. Charles Towne, on the other hand, was marketed to the English pioneers as the greatest society town of all the colonies. Thus, Charles Towne attracted superior party animals. It is in our genes. We continue to lead the world in social culture.
As evidenced by the shows party down south and southern charm.
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Old 05-01-2014, 08:15 AM   #15
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

and we shouldn't have a problem huntin' skirts and boots. That's the way our girls dress on Saturdays too. Cowgirl boots and little black dresses!!! enough to bring a man to his knees.
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Old 05-01-2014, 09:05 AM   #16
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

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As evidenced by the shows party down south and southern charm.
Charleston is very happy about these shows!!!!
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Old 05-01-2014, 10:14 AM   #17
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

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Originally Posted by KSigAg12 View Post
First of all, as we say in Aggieland, howdy.

I've been reading the thread on the A&M game as well as threads on our fan sites about you guys. I realize that for two opponents who will be meeting for the first, and as of now for the first of many times, there are a lot of unknowns for both fanbases regarding the opposing team. Add in the kicker that this is a season opener and both teams are replacing key playmakers, and the unknown factor goes up a ton. I wanted to consolidate a preview of our team, from a lifelong fan and Former Student's (we call our alumni that) perspective position by position on both sides of the ball.

Offense
Quarterback
A starter between Kyle Allen and Kenny Hill will be named mid-August. Kenny hurt his chances with his arrest and missing practice time, and I will say Kyle Allen drew rave reviews during spring ball. When you are the number one pocket passer in the country coming out of high school, you should. Both guys are primarily pocket passers, with Kenny being the more athletic runner. Both have the footwork to get five yards on a play where everyone is covered. A&M's offense will look much more like the traditional "air raid", since these guys are FAR more pocket oriented than Johnny.

Running Backs
Tra Carson, a transfer from Oregon, really came on at the end of last year and will start. He's a bruiser who flashed some surprising speed on a couple of long runs last year. However, starting will mean nothing because this is a backfield which also has Trey Williams. He's shifty and quick. Watch his youtube highlights and you'll get the idea. Brandon Williams, an Oklahoma transfer, brings straight line speed. He hasn't gotten a large share of carries but with Ben Malena gone that number will go up. James White, RS Fr., was a surprise during spring ball and is more like Carson.

Wide Receivers
Malcome Kennedy returns as Mr. Reliable. Good route runner and team leader. Josh Reynolds, a newcomer, surprised during spring ball and will compete for a starting spot. Ricky Seals Jones is the name to watch. He got hurt very early in the season last year but was the number one recruit in Texas. He's big and fast. Speedy Noil enrolled early and wowed during spring ball. He and LaQuivonte Gonzalez (the two Speedys if you will) will add a new dimension to the offense this year. True deep threats who can strike from anywhere, and not just big reliable pass catchers. Jake Spavital, the new offensive coordinator who took over the role in the Chick Fil A bowl, will use Cameron Clear, a Tennessee transfer, quite a bit at tight end. He is a sasquatch.

Offensive Line
Thanks to Mike Sherman and Kevin Sumlin's recruiting, this has been just a big a part of us transitioning well into the SEC as Johnny. Cedric Ogbuehi, Jarvis Harrison, Mike Matthews, and Germain Ifedi (spring star), all return up front with a competition between some new comers going on at the other guard spot. Much like Manziel had in 2012, the new qb will benefit from a good offensive line and dangerous running game.

Defense (Ah, and here is where it gets interesting)
Up front, I'm going to tell you that the only person I am assuming doesn't play against South Carolina is DE Gavin Stansbury (his assault case has taken some twists and turns even though he has been reinstated). As for the others, the offenses, I would think, were early enough in the offseason that they don't miss USC. I hope I am right because they are all guys we will need.

Defensive Line
Isaiah Golden returns along with Alonzo Williams and Hardreck Walker. The returning starters will get a boost from freshmen Zaycoven Henderson and DeShawn Washington. Henderson, who we flipped from Texas, was a bright spot during spring. Justin Manning, who redshirted last year, was the top rated defensive player from Texas out of high school, but for some reason the staff felt he needed to develop some last year. All reports are that he is coming along nicely. At end, Julien Obioha returns as a third year starter. Jay Arnold got much better towards the end of the year and Daeshon Hall, who is small but fast, will be relied upon to help alleviate the problem of not getting enough pressure (any pressure) on quarterbacks last year. The biggest name to remember is Myles Garrett. The UA All American, number one defensive recruit in Texas, and top 10 ESPN recruit is projected to make an impact immediately. His highlight film indicates he should do just that. If there was ever a recruit A&M sorely needed to sign, this is the guy.

Linebacker
Darian Claiborne will probably be strong side. He was a freshman last year who showed some real flashes of brilliance but needs to get his head straight off of it. He can be a star if he does. Shaan Washington, sophomore, who is undersized, along with Tommy Sanders, are faster and will play weak side. Jordan Mastrogiovanni also returns for HIS sophomore season (see a pattern?) and has solidified himself as the middle linebacker. He MUST improve against the run and that has been his focus. Also expect to see Reggie Chevis, a redshirt last year who is much more of a thumper, and TCU transfer AJ Hilliard to rotate in pretty often. I'd also expect Otara Alaka, another Texas flip, to come in and compete.

Secondary
By far the most experienced unit and strength of the defense. New coach Terry Joseph from Nebraska has gotten a lot out of his guys this spring and Aggie fans are very high on him. Deshazor Everett returns for his senior campaign (he is the guy who sealed the win against Bama two years ago), with Devante Harris (junior) on the other side. There's a number of guys who stepped up in spring ball to back them up. Howard Matthews will be back at safety, and the heat has been on him. Anytime A&M got beat deep the last two years (specifically looking at Ole Miss 2013, late against Bama in 2012, and Duke) it was on this guy. Good news is, the new coach has gotten a hold of him and he has had a great spring. However, I would expect Spurrier to take a shot at him fairly early in the ball game with Roland or Byrd just to test the waters. Watching film of you guys, the PA long ball seemed to be your go to big play. If Matthews improvement is what it supposedly has been, it will be sorely needed for A&M against the Cocks. Floyd Raven returns as a senior at the other safety spot and Noel Ellis, high school teammate of Speedy Noil, will be at the nickel. Nick Harvey, a true freshman, may fight for that nickel spot when he gets on campus. He has been compared to the Honey Badger.

Special Teams
Thank God we found Josh Lambo to replace Taylor Bertolet at kicker. Drew Kaser is a solid punter but I'm hoping it won't come to that.

To sum it up, A&M has a great running game, and whoever the qb is will have that and a variety of wideouts to throw it to. Not just big physical guys like Evans, but some speedsters as well, lead by Noil. On defense, counting the number of freshmen we had in the front 7 last year will tell you all you need to know about why we struggled. Mark Snyder is a good defensive coordinator and really did well with the 2012 group and improved us from what we had been. He can scheme interceptions and pick sixes, and I think the guys having a year under their belt and more very elite youth coming in will help him continue to build a true SEC depth chart on that side of the ball. A&M certainly won't be the "Wrecking Crew" of the 80s and 90s, not yet. But they will improve this year. The question is, in the first game out of the gate in a hostile environment, will they be improved enough? We will have to see.
Welcome. I was recovering from some surgery in 1999 and had ESPN on all day when I saw a special on Texas A&M. I knew very little about your school until then, but found this whole getting together to practice cheering thing very interesting. Ever since, up to Johnny Manziel, I wished you guys well. If I ever caught the Texas-Texas A&M game on the tv I rooted for you guys. Thought you'd be a great addition to the SEC, and that has been proven true. But I can't stand Manziel, very few people I know make me really want to dropkick them in the face but he is one of them.

So anyway, on to the teams. I will just play off of ReadRooster's synopsis right now and start with Defense.

I think CB is going to be fine with McWilliams and Jamari Smith being our two main guys. We also have some experienced guys who haven't seen the field much with a very good crop of recruits coming in. I expect them to give up more big plays this year, partially because of the next part.

Defensive Line, this is the first year in many that we don't have what I would consider above average to excellent size at that position. I am not sure what to expect out of the Dline right now. I have said a few times I think the DE's will focus on containment and we will have to get pressure up the middle or from blitzing LB's/Safeties, of which we have several that can handle that role. But it will be a very different feel than what we've become accustomed to. Given your synopsis, if we can't figure out a good way to move that QB around he might be able to hurt us.

Linebackers, what was a liability at times last year now has several guys with great experience. You can make the argument this unit is on the lighter side and you would be correct, but we will see good things from them this year. I have a feeling LB's will be our main source of QB pressure, based on my previous paragraph.

Offense is as good as I've ever felt about them. The only question is consistent production at WR, but we have some guys who have the ability it is just time for them to do it. Tight End, we have three really good options with some recruits coming in as well. Running Back, we literally could start 3 different guys and not have a drop off. Offensive line, the guys who could go to the Spring games said they looked as good as they have ever looked. Hopefully that's not due to my description of the DLine above and more due to the fact that we have a lot of beef up front with experience, 2 deep at every slot. And of course, QB, if you had to replace a great QB in Connor Shaw this is certainly the way to do it. He has won games for us and gotten some quality game time action.

Based on your descriptions, it doesn't really sound like your team has any big concerns, which is surprising given the way the defense ended last year. I think our home stadium will give us the advantage, but we also have not played well in our first game, historically. We always have some flashes of brilliance, you will think we are going along fine and about to go up multiple TD's and then we can't throw it in the ocean. I am hopeful we break that pattern this time around, because I think we need to or we might be in some trouble in this game.
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Old 05-01-2014, 06:27 PM   #18
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Welcome to the board and nice first post. A&M have some serious offensive weapons and it will be paramount we pressure the QB and force turnovers in order to win. It's a very intriguing matchup and should be a good one.
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Old 05-01-2014, 07:06 PM   #19
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Default Re: Texas A&M Scouting Report- From an Aggie (Long and Detailed)

Our special teams are nothing special.
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